Kerala: Select BPL families to get free internet by May-end | Thiruvananthapuram News

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state government is gearing up to provide free internet connection to select BPL families in all the assembly segments by the end of May. This would mark the beginning of the ambitious plan to provide free internet connections to 20 lakh families across the state under the Kerala Optical Fibre Network (K-FON) project announced by the first Pinarayi Vijayan government in 2017.
The Kerala State IT Infrastructure Ltd, which oversees the project, has invited expressions of interest (EoI) from local internet service providers that are capable of providing last-mile connectivity.
“At first, the plan is to provide connectivity to 100 eligible families in each assembly constituency. It would be scaled up later. We are almost reaching our target of establishing high-speed internet connectivity in 30,000 government institutions,” said K-FON head Santhosh Babu.
According to the plans, each family that gets free connection would be able to use up to 1.5 GB data per day at a speed of 10 to 15 MB per second. Tenders have been floated to identify the potential local internet providers. Beneficiaries would be identified by respective local bodies and the same would be handed over by K-FON to the local service providers for establishing connectivity.
As many as 500 families eligible for the free internet connectivity would be identified in the first phase.
Kerala was the first state to declare access to the internet as the basic right of citizens.
The K-FON project is being rolled out at an estimated cost of Rs 1,531 crore. The internet service would be given to others at a highly competitive rate. The optical fibre cables are drawn using the KSEB distribution network. Cables are being strung along 2,600km.

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